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Full text of "Alexander von Humboldt"

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354                               MFB   OF
universities, and here Humboldt found the oppor-
tunity of showing his active universal mind in founding
a real pattern university. His mind was filled by a
high ideal, foreign to every low thought, and he was
quite as averse to satisfying such demands of selfish-
ness as those made by common statesmen, who consider
high schools as mere training establishments for the
public service, and use them as a means for forming
the spirit of the nation according to their narrow-
minded or arbitrary views. Humboldt, on the con-
trary, wished to free the mind, from its fetters, and
so little did he care to maintain the influence of
the state over advanced stxidies, that, as we have
already stated, he repealed the law forbidding students
to visit foreign universities.
Two high schools had remained in Prussia * after
the peace—Konigsberg and Frankfurt-on-the-Oder.
The one in Konigsberg was well reformed • an obser-
vatory was built, a number of new 'professorial chairs,
such as the progress of science called for, were erected,
eminent teachers, in the fall vigour of manhood, wex*e
appointed, and the funds of the university considerably
increased. Frankfurt was also not forgotten. The
intention of removing this establishment to Breslau,
and of uniting it with the theological institution there,
was formed at this time, but not carried out until
1811. It was, however, not forgotten during Hum-
boldtfs period of office, as we see by a letter written
by Professor David Sch\ilz? who was appointed there,
"Matters improve even with us, and something
effective is being done for the academy. Herren von
Humboldt and Silvern were here in person a short time
ago. Several new professors have been appointed/*
All this was effected dining the greatest distress,
when the government did not know how the necessary
expenses were to be provided. And yet there -was
no parsimony in a branch which generally is the first
to suffer retrenchment.
The most important work, however, is the founda-
tion of .the university of Berlin. The king gave his